Inspection of bridge crossing on a B.C. forest service road. (B.C. Forest Practices Board)

Inspection of bridge crossing on a B.C. forest service road. (B.C. Forest Practices Board)

Forest Service Roads up to snuff in Okanagan Shuswap: report

Audit shows district doing appropriate job maintaining forest service roads and bridges

An audit of the district managers’ obligations to maintain forest service roads (FSRs) in the Okanagan Shuswap Natural Resource District has found the FSRs and crossing structures were built and maintained appropriately as required by the Forest and Range Practices Act.

The government, through the district manager, must maintain FSRs that are not being maintained by forest companies or BC Timber Sales. In the Okanagan Shuswap district, this consists of 1,203 kilometres of road, all of which are classified as “wilderness road.”

Wilderness roads are roads not being used for industrial purposes. On these wilderness FSRs, the district manager is responsible for maintaining the structural integrity of the roads and ensuring the roads’ drainage systems are functional.

“While these roads are not currently being used by industry, they are open to the public and may be used for recreation access,” said Kevin Kriese, chairperson of the Forest Practices Board. “The board is pleased to find the district is doing a good job of looking after them.”

This audit took place within the traditional territories of the Ktunaxa, Nsyilxcən and Secwepemctsín speaking peoples.

The Forest Practices Board is B.C.’s independent watchdog for sound forest and range practices, reporting its findings and recommendations directly to the public and government.

The board audits forest and range practices on public lands and the appropriateness of government enforcement. It can also make recommendations for improvement to practices and legislation.

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